Preservation of evidence - national proceedings

Estonia

Estonia - Criminal Procedure Code 2003 (2017) EN

Chapter 3
PROOF

Division 9
Document and Physical Evidence

§ 125. Storage of physical evidence

(1) Physical evidence shall be stored in a criminal file, physical evidence storage facility of a body conducting the proceedings or in another premises in the possession of or territory guarded by the body or in a forensic institution, or the measures prescribed in § 126 of this Code shall be applied with regard to the physical evidence if this does not damage the interests of the criminal proceedings.

(2) Physical evidence which cannot be stored pursuant to the procedure provided for in subsection (1) of this section and with regard to which the measures prescribed in § 126 of this Code cannot be applied in the interests of the criminal proceedings prior to the entry into force of a court judgment or termination of the criminal proceeding shall be deposited into storage with liability on the basis of a contract.

(3) A person with whom physical evidence is deposited shall ensure the inviolability and preservation of the evidence.

(4) A person with whom physical evidence is deposited but who is not the owner or legal possessor thereof has the right to receive compensation for the storage fee which shall be included in the procedure expenses. The storage costs shall be compensated for on the basis of a contract between the body conducting the proceedings and the depositary.

(5) If physical evidence is a document which is necessary for the owner in the future economic or professional activity thereof or for another good reason, the body conducting the proceedings shall make a copy of the document for the owner. The authenticity of the copy shall be certified by the signature of the person conducting the proceedings on the copy.

(6) Subsections (1)-(5) of this section are applied also with regard to confiscated objects which are not physical evidence.
[RT I 2004, 46, 329 - entry into force 01.07.2004]

Chapter 3 1
SURVEILLANCE ACTIVITIES

§ 126 12. Storage, use and destruction of surveillance files and data recordings collected by surveillance activities

(1) The photographs, films, audio and video recordings and other data recordings or any part thereof necessary for the adjudication of a criminal matter and made in the course of surveillance activities shall be stored in the criminal file or together with the criminal matter. The rest of the materials on surveillance activities shall be stored at surveillance agencies pursuant to the procedure specified in subsection 12611(2) of this Code.

(2) Surveillance files shall be stored as follows :

1) surveillance files kept on criminal offences under preparation, files on searching persons and confiscation files – until the redundancy of information contained therein, but for not longer than 50 years ;
2) files on criminal offences – until the deletion of data concerning punishment from the punishment register or the expiry of the limitation period of the criminal offence.

(3) The data obtained by surveillance activities may be used in other surveillance activities, other criminal proceedings, security checks, in deciding, in the cases provided by law, upon hiring persons and grant of permissions or licences to verify the conformity of the person to the requirements provided by law.

(4) The data obtained by surveillance activities may be stored for study and research purposes. Personal data and, if necessary, the information collected shall be completely altered in order to prevent disclosure of persons who have been engaged in surveillance activities or recruited therefor.

(5) If preservation of a data recording made in the course of surveillance activities and added to a criminal file is not necessary, the person subject to the surveillance activities whose fundamental rights were violated by such surveillance activities may request destruction of the data recording after the entry into force of the court judgment.

(6) The data recording specified in subsection (5) of this section shall be destroyed by a court. A report shall be prepared on the destruction of a data recording and included in the criminal file.

(7) If the materials on surveillance activities are stored in a criminal file, the information concerning the persons accused in criminal proceedings whose private or family life was significantly violated by the surveillance activities and whose rights or freedoms may be significantly damaged by disclosure shall be removed from or covered up in the criminal file upon disclosure thereof pursuant to the Public Information Act.

(8) Files containing a state secret or classified information of a foreign state shall be stored and destroyed pursuant to the State Secrets and Classified Information of Foreign States Act.

(9) Surveillance files subject to destruction and data recordings collected shall be destroyed by a committee formed by the head of a surveillance agency in the presence of a prosecutor. The committee shall prepare a report concerning the destruction of a file and data recording collected which shall set out the number of the file or information concerning the destructed data recording and the reason for the destruction thereof.
[RT I, 29.06.2012, 2 - entry into force 01.01.2013]

Rome Statute

Article 93 Other forms of cooperation

1. States Parties shall, in accordance with the provisions of this Part and under procedures of national law, comply with requests by the Court to provide the following assistance in relation to investigations or prosecutions:

(j) The protection of victims and witnesses and the preservation of evidence;